An important aspect of cultural tourism is literary tourism. Krakow attracts school trips – and not only them – from all over Poland, for as a historical centre of the Polish language, it constitutes a unique space, where one may find evidence of the history of the language and the formation of the Polish statehood, and follow the tracks of the luminaries of Polish culture. Popular cultural trails follow the tracks of Polish Art Nouveau, Stanisław Wyspiański, Józef Mehoffer, Joseph Conrad, Czesław Miłosz, and since not so long ago, also Stanisław Lem. Krakow also has a lot to offer to those interested in painting, unique collections of Judaica, and the pre-war history of the district of Kazimierz. Also the crime, socialist realist (the Polish People’s Republic trail in Nowa Huta), and film (e.g. connected with the life of Roman Polański and Steven Spielberg’s Schindler’s List) trails enjoy popularity. A significant challenge for the future is the development of literary tourism in cooperation with the institutions of the third sector and universities.
Krakow – a city where numerous literary events take place, e.g. the Milosz Festival and the Conrad Festival, the Book Fair, the Tischner Days, the Krakow Poetry Salon, and the Poetry Night – is a good place to practice festival tourism. Apart from these cyclical events, visitors to Krakow may also take part in many soirées and semi-literary events organised in places such as Czuły Barbarzyńca, Massolit Books & Cafe, the Bona Bookstore, Lokator, and Nowa Prowincja.
The Reading Malopolska portal provides tourists with ready trails and their detailed descriptions. Thanks to them, visitors will find places close to outstanding figures such as: Czesław Miłosz, Stanisław Lem, Sławomir Mrożek, and Jerzy Turowicz, not only in Krakow, but in the entire region of Malopolska. We will find objects, places, and landscapes related to their lives, but also those they described in literature. The trails also provide the opportunity to get to know the most current phenomena as part of the young literature and contemporary reportage trails. A thematic extension are trails of women and Jewish literature. The youngest readers (and not only them) may also enjoy the children’s literature trail, while those a little older ones may like Krakow’s pub realism – the presentation of popular Krakow cafes, clubs, and pubs that appear in contemporary literature.